Womenswear retailers must stock key commercial pieces if they are to make the most of the autumn 09 season and ride out the recession, according to David Wolfe, creative director of New York trend agency The Doneger Group.
Speaking at The Doneger Group’s presentation at the Millennium Hotel in London, Wolfe crystallised the autumn 09 trends into a selection of pieces that he said would translate from the catwalk to the shop floor at every level of fashion retail. With the emphasis on creating real sales, rather than just nodding to catwalk trends, Wolfe said the overall mood would turn away from ostentation and conspicuous consumerism.
He said the autumn 09 runway collections had been beset by a plague of “knee-jerk black which looked like a financial funeral”.
Among the essential items was a “great” black dress. Wolfe said: “Most women already have one but they will need a new one. Something that takes in the new details - lace, draped fabrics or an asymmetric shoulder.”
With womenswear becoming more businesslike, tailoring will become more important, said Wolfe, adding that jackets with oversized peplums would emerge as the first step into new, more structured silhouettes, while soft, wide-leg trousers with menswear pleats will compete with skinny-fit trousers for women’s spend.
Separates will also become more important as women “relearn to co-ordinate”. Wolfe emphasised the re-emergence of skirts, particularly grown-up styles with lower hemlines, pencil skirts, and rounded skirts including dirndl styles. The oversized boyfriend jacket, he added, will stay relevant. Other key items will include belted outerwear, shorts, and black, textured leather jackets.
On accessories, Wolfe recommended statement necklaces. He also endorsed long-line gloves for injections of colour as women return to co-ordinated outfits.